Fernando Corrales, Centro Nacional de Biotecnologia, CSIC, Spain
The Biology and disease driven Human Proteome Project (B/D-HPP) is one of the international initiatives launched by HUPO to elucidate the molecular basis of human biology and disease progression, to uncover protein drivers of human disease and to promote the development of novel proteomics-based tools to improve the clinical management of patients. Through this activity, the B/D-HPP aims to promote the use of proteomics by the broad scientific community and to translate proteomics findings into medical applications for the benefit of patients.
The B/D-HPP currently encompasses the efforts of 19 independent initiatives (https://www.hupo.org/B/D-HPP) that focus their activity in specific organs (Brain, EyeOme, Kidney&Urine, Liver, Muscle Skeletal, Plasma), diseases (Cancer, Cardiovascular, Diabetes, Infectious Diseases, Protein Aggregation, Rheumatic and Autoimmune), populations (PediOme) and other topics (Extreme Conditions, Food and Nutrition, Glycoproteomics, Immunopeptidome, Mitochondria, Model Organisms).
Since 2017 I had the great honor of coordinating the B/D-HPP with the indispensable commitment of the Executive Council integrated by Jenny Van Eyk, Ileana Cristea, Hui Zhang, Paola Roncada, Sanjeeva Shrivastava, Tadashi Yamamoto, Eric Deutsch, Gil Omenn, Mark Baker, Ferdinando Cerciello, Michelle Hill and Vera Ignjatovic). During this time the B/D teams have made outstanding contributions to their respective fields, as reflected by the increasing number of published papers, as well as by the participation in activities from clinical/biomedical societies in their specialized congresses and educational activities. These outstanding achievements have been compiled in annual reports that illustrate the unprecedented capability of proteomics to understand human biology and disease and the significant improvement made in the direction of democratizing the use of proteomics, one of the main goals of the initiative. Besides the activity and strategic discussions, and reports shared with the community, some of the success stories from B/D-HPP teams are communicated each year as part of the main program sessions in the HUPO World Congress.
January 2020 marks the start of a new period for the B/D-HPP and new challenges are already on the table to ensure the dynamism and enthusiasm of individual teams and the overall initiative under the HPP umbrella.
First, we should increase our visibility and facilitate the incorporation of scientists to the active teams to consolidate multidisciplinary communities that promote the translation of proteomics technology into clinical applications. This can be achieved by maintenaning a close collaboration with the Early Career Research (ECR) Community. In my opinion, this is a priority that works in two directions, participating in the outstanding ECR initiatives and incorporating the ECRs and their inputs into the B/D-HPP strategy.
Second, we should potentiate our strengths by enhancing our networking across the HPP initiatives and teams. Apart from the research programs currently active within the HPP initiatives and Pillars, the next B/D-HPP challenge relates to functional annotation of proteins in their biological environments. In this regard, sharing technological resources, data, samples (rare cells and tissues, for instance) and knowhow, appears as a priority for future steps by the B/D- HPP. To this end, the C-HPP, B/D-HPP and the four HPP Pillars must define a common framework to facilitate their crosstalk, as well as the enable interaction with the broad scientific community.
Starting in January 2020 the B/D-HPP ship will be captained by Ileana Cristea, who has brilliantly coordinated the Infectious Diseases team over the course of the last few years. Moreover, Ileana has been participating at various levels in the HUPO structures and, therefore, has the capacity to integrate a detailed knowledge of HUPO and B/D-HPP strategy, ensuring a smooth transition and outstanding progress in the next two years.